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SBI Landfill Odour update and FAQs


Council is continuing to liaise closely with the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) regarding the odour being emitted from the SBI inert landfill in Ballarto Road Cranbourne.  
Council is advocating on behalf of our residents and has issued a Planning Contravention Notice to the Stevensons Brothers Industries (SBI) as the operator of the site relating to the amenity impacts of the operation.  

For more information or to report odour concerns, please visit the EPA’s website

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers  

What is the issue?  
Odour being emitted from the SBI inert landfill has been impacting Botanic Ridge, Settlers Run, Brooklands Greens and Cranbourne residents. The landfill is an EPA licensed site which accepts solid inert material such as construction and demolition waste. The site also holds an EPA licence for waste and resource recovery. 
More information on the source of the odour is available on the EPA’s or SBI’s website.  

What authority is responsible for enforcement and compliance of odour for the landfill site? 
Under the Environment Protection Act, EPA is the lead authority for the enforcement of the site’s operating licence, including addressing any odour related issues. The EPA’s website includes details on what action they are taking to address the issue. 

What is Council Doing? 
Council has issued a Planning Contravention Notice to SBI, as the operator of the site, relating to the amenity impacts of the operation. The permit relies upon compliance with the more detailed operating licence issued by the EPA.  

Council is continuing to advocate on behalf of our residents and meets regularly with EPA to ensure the issue is being addressed, as well as providing Council facilities and resources. 

Why can’t the EPA or Council take more compliance action against SBI, including closing the site down?  
It is important that a coordinated enforcement strategy is adopted and applied.   
The EPA is the regulatory authority responsible for compliance and enforcement against SBI Landfill Pty Ltd for odour. The immediate focus is to abate the sources of odour and mitigate the impact on the local community as soon as possible. 

Council advancing further enforcement proceedings under the Victorian Planning and Environment Act (1987) at this juncture, risks jeopardising any proceedings under the Environment Protection Act (2017).  It is also important to note State legislation does not give Council’s Local Laws authority to override EPA action and close down the site. 

What happens if SBI do not fix the odour by the EPA deadline? 
EPA will decide on any action to be taken should SBI fail to meet compliance deadlines. 

Why did Council issue a permit in the first place and did Council advise the community that a landfill permit would be issued? 
Planning Scheme Amendment C115 (the Amendment) to the Casey Planning Scheme enabled consideration of a refuse disposal facility at 950 Ballarto Road, Cranbourne South. The Amendment included a concurrent planning application for the use and development of the refuse disposal facility (Solid Inert Waste) and display of signage.  

The site was supported by State Government planning policy and specifically identified in the Metropolitan Waste Resource Recovery Strategic Plan as a site that could service solid inert waste disposal demand.  

The Amendment was exhibited by Council to the community during July/August 2013. Public exhibition included notices and material sent to approximately 1,400 landowners and occupiers, public notices in the local papers, and signage on site. The exhibition material included the proposed permit details and draft conditions.  

In September 2013, state-wide changes were made by the Minister for Planning to the Farming Zone which had the effect of changing “industry” (which includes Refuse Disposal’) from a “Prohibited” use, to a “Permit required” use.  

An independent Planning Panel was appointed by the Minister for Planning to review the Amendment and submissions. The panel report considered the 17 submissions and a petition received through the exhibition period.  
The Planning Panel handed down its report on 12 February 2014 and recommended to the Minister for Planning and Council that the proposal be approved. The reports can be viewed on the Victorian State Government’s website.   
Amendment C115 was approved by the Minister for Planning and published in the Government Gazette on 25 June 2015.  A planning permit was issued by the City of Casey in alignment with the Ministers Planning Panel assessment.   

Why did Council extend the landfill permit? 
The landfill planning permit has not been extended since it was first issued.  

How long will the site operate? 
The site will operate until it has reached capacity and is filled. 
The rate at which the site is filled will be determined by several factors including disposal cost, industry activity and recovery of material before landfilling. Initial estimates from SBI were between 8 and 15 years, however this may change.   

Why does the sealed section of Ballarto Road end just past the entrance of landfill and when is the rest of the road being made? What is being done to reduce mud on the road? 
Sealing of Ballarto Road just past the landfill entrance was a requirement on SBI as part of the planning permit for the landfill.  The section beyond this point is likely to be made if the Royal Botanic Gardens Cranbourne upgrade their Ballarto Road entrance.  

Trucks exiting the SBI site drive through a wheel wash to remove excess dirt from their tyres and a water cart and street sweeper operate to suppress dust and maintain the condition of Ballarto Road.  

Council is investigating measures which support discouraging truck drivers from parking on the verge of Ballarto Road.